Greetings and Updates from CAA’s New President

Dear Members, Supporters and Friends,

Late last year, Connecticut Arts Alliance shared with you our first three-year strategic plan with a focus on building a stronger, more effective advocate for the creative sector in our state. Since then, we’ve been working hard on doing just that. As CAA’s newly-elected president, I’d like to tell you about the considerable progress we’ve made and share what’s coming up next.

We’re growing an advocacy network.

Legislative advocacy has always been at the center of CAA’s work, but it will be particularly challenging this year as the state grapples with the financial fallout from the COVID crisis. That’s why we’ve launched the Connecticut Arts Advocacy Network. The Action Network will allow us to work closely with state government leaders and ensure that there is a strong, collective voice for our community. Activities of the Advocacy Network are supported by membership dues and will align closely with CAA’s work to educate and organize on behalf of the creative community. 

We’re securing critical funding.

Our strategic plan recognizes that we need the support of Connecticut’s philanthropic institutions if CAA is to truly be a statewide resource for the creative community. We’ve reached out to the state’s community foundations and have received generous support from the Connecticut Community Foundation and the Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut . The Connecticut Office of the Arts has also pledged significant support for our work, while a number of members have made 3-year membership pledges, often at levels beyond their base dues. 

We’re building a stronger, more resilient organization.

One of CAA’s core strengths has always been the experience and expertise of our Board of Directors and its leadership. As CAA works to fully embrace its role as Connecticut’s only statewide advocate for arts organizations, artists, and the entire creative sector, I am fortunate to be working with a truly outstanding board led by newly-elected officers Daniel Fitzmaurice as Vice President, Frank Tavera as Treasurer, and Tatiana DaSilva as Secretary. With this team in place, we have developed a three-month operating plan that focuses CAA’s energy on building value for our members, ensuring our elected officials in Hartford understand and support the needs of the arts community, and rallying the community around issues that affect us all.

We’re ready to go!

With a solid foundation in place, we’re ready to launch Create the Vote for the 2020 election cycle. This nonpartisan campaign, which we first launched for the 2018 election, will focus on connecting voters with the issues that impact the arts and share information on where candidates in their districts stand. We’ll also be working with candidates to educate them on the value of the arts, especially in this time of unprecedented need. There’s never been a time in memory that the arts have been more important yet our community more challenged. Create the Vote will help ensure that those who hope to be elected this fall know that we vote for the arts!

We are proud of the amazing work that you do, every day, to promote healing in this time of sickness, champion unity in a time of divisiveness, and give voice to those who have not been heard. Thank you for this vital work. It’s what drives CAA in our mission to inspire support for the arts. And, to our members and funders, THANK YOU! Your support makes our work possible and nourishes the arts community statewide. 
Not a member yet? Add your organization’s voice in support of the arts by becoming a member now.

Stay safe and be well.

Calida N. Jones

CT Arts Alliance Appoints New Administrator

Facebook logoThe Board of Directors of the Connecticut Arts Alliance (CAA) is pleased to announce that Darren Farrington has been appointed the first Administrator of the advocacy organization and has begun in the position this summer.

“I’m thrilled to have been selected as the first administrator for the CAA, and I’m prepared to take on the challenge of increasing the visibility, the efforts, and the impact of this organization in this new chapter of its history. It’s exciting to me too that this position combines my passion and experience in the arts with the advocacy skills I learned and used as an attorney.”

Farrington is a theater producer, director, and consultant who has worked in professional, community, and youth theaters for over two decades. Among the theaters and organizations that he has worked with are Manhattan Theatre Club, the Alliance of Resident Theatres/New York, the Warner Theatre in Torrington, and several small companies in New York City. Currently, he is Executive and Artistic Director of New Britain Youth Theater, and he will continue in that position while also with the CAA. As an arts management consultant, Farrington has worked with several Connecticut nonprofits independently and as an advisor for the Peer Advisor Network of the Connecticut Office of the Arts.

Farrington earned a Master of Fine Arts degree from Columbia University School of the Arts in Theater Management and Production. He is also a non-practicing attorney with a degree from Fordham University School of Law, and his past practice included entertainment law, commercial litigation, and appeals. He received his undergraduate degree from the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts, where his activities included serving as president of an extracurricular theater group and as mentor for bilingual inner-city children. Darren is a native of Litchfield County, where he again resides with his wife and daughter.

The CAA was founded in 2005 as an advocacy organization to ensure that the arts remain central to life in Connecticut. The organization strives to promote and underscore the value of all achievements of the arts industry and all of the ways in which the arts improve daily life for residents of the State. Among its most visible programs are assisting with workshops for the annual Connecticut Arts Day at the Capitol organized by the Connecticut Office of the Arts, and providing advocacy guidance and resources in concert with the Office of the Arts and regional arts service organizations. The Administrator will work with the CAA Board of Directors to foster public education and awareness of the arts, to increase funding for the arts, and to influence public funding decisions and actions that affect the arts.